Since I started sharing my walk with Jesus with you I have wanted to take time during the special holidays to commemorate them. I was able to do this for Passion week 2019. This year I am blessed to have a natural breaking point where I can step out of our regular study schedule for the season of Advent. During this season I want to use the Jesse Tree to mark our progress towards the greatest gift ever given.
I was first introduced to the Jesse Tree by my mother. She had purchased the book, made the ornaments, and the advent tree to use in her home. I say ‘her’ home because I was already married with children of my own and living far away. My two youngest siblings were all that remained in our childhood home. My mom was disappointed with their reaction to her plan. They were teenagers and had ‘plans’ for their time that differed from hers. She gave it her all that first year. Then she remembered me.
I am a Christmas FIEND! I LOVE Christmas. I sing Christmas songs all year long. The first year I was away from home I called my parents to wake them up for presents. At least that time I waited until a decent hour. I also had young children. My mom rightly assumed that they would be more willing to participate in the daily activities of the Jesse Tree.
She was spot on! My kids LOVED it! We even used felt markers and colored the ornaments she had created. We faithfully used our gift for MANY years. But they too suffered that ‘teenage’ syndrome and their interest died. My tree was permanently retired. Unfortunately it was also lost in all the moves we have made.
A few years ago I tried to resurrect the tradition by sending a Jesse Tree advent book to each of my children to use with their children. Between my husband and I, we have six children and currently have 11 grandchildren. To my sorrow I was not able to locate the same version of the Jesse Tree that I had used so I sent what was available on Amazon and let them take it from there.
This year my husband and I had planned to spend Christmas with my middle son and his family in Colorado. I thought this would be the perfect time to resurrect the Jesse Tree with them. Also, as more of my time would be taken up with grandchildren, I wouldn’t have hours to spend on my usual writing. The Jesse Tree already provides a format and is short. This would fit both my needs; time constraints and passing on a treasured tradition.
Due to circumstances beyond our control, that trip has been postponed. But the natural break still remains. SO, I’m going to stick with my original plan. I will be using a version of the Jesse Tree I found online. It’s start date is the same as my original one was so I’m hoping it follows along closely. It begins on November 27th. First Samuel still has a few more chapters left before we hit the ‘natural break’. Therefore you (and I) will be blessed with TWO blogs a day to accommodate both schedules. I hope you will enjoy the journey with me. I will post a link to my source, just in case you want to print out your own. Sorry for the LONG introduction. Here we go!!!
The Stump of Jesse’s reading is Isaiah 11:1-9.
The first five verses give a beautiful description of Jesus. I never thought about it before but in order for Jesus to be from the “stump of Jesse” the tree had to be cut down.
We know of the earthly lineage of Jesus. His family tree is traced for us in both Matthew and Luke’s gospels. We covered both these in previous blogs and I commented that I really don’t enjoy the ‘begats’ sections. We know that Jesus is of the tribe of Judah which gave rise to Israel’s second king; David. When Israel was split into two kingdoms, David’s line continued on the throne over the portion named Judah. This was made up of the tribes of Benjamin and Judah.
History loses track of the ten northern tribes after the fall of the northern kingdom. Both kingdoms eventually fell but when Israel was reestablished it did so from the roots of the southern kingdom; Judah. That is where the term Jew comes from. Jews are from the line of Judah.
David’s tree was cut down with the fall of Judah. No longer would one of his descendants sit on the throne. But there was one to come who would sit on an even greater throne. He came from the same roots in this world but He was more. His true roots tapped creation itself. His life’s blood came from God. He was God in the flesh.
What an amazing family tree! His roots REALLY ran deep!
The final four verses in our reading speak of what it will be like when His kingdom is established here on earth. We are still waiting on that day. We have no way of knowing how many more branches will be added to our family tree before that day but I’m praying that EACH of them taps into that same source.
The Family Tree of Jesus runs through the Spirit. All who call on Him as Lord, He presents to His Father for adoption and grafting into His tree. Let’s see it GROW! Let’s help it grow too.
Father God, thank You for grafting me into Your family. Thank You also for the family You placed me in here on earth. I love watching it grow. I PRAY with ALL MY HEART that my children and grandchildren turn to You for life. You are the true source. The life that cannot be stopped or cut off. The shoot that comes forth even after death has struck.